CA’s “First of its Kind” Bill to Prosecute Climate Change Deniers Sidelined
First Amendment should be listed as “Endangered Species”
As a proponent of serious scientific review of environmental policies, I have been blessed to share news related to climate change with Legal Insurrection readers.
Little did I realize this might have made me a criminal in my home state! Fortunately, it looks like I have dodged a bullet…legally.
California Senate just sidelined a bill to prosecute climate change skeptics.
Senate Bill 1161, or the California Climate Science Truth and Accountability Act of 2016, would have authorized prosecutors to sue fossil fuel companies, think tanks and others that have “deceived or misled the public on the risks of climate change.”
The measure, which cleared two Senate committees, provided a four-year window in the statute of limitations on violations of the state’s Unfair Competition Law, allowing legal action to be brought until Jan. 1 on charges of climate change “fraud” extending back indefinitely.
“This bill explicitly authorizes district attorneys and the Attorney General to pursue UCL claims alleging that a business or organization has directly or indirectly engaged in unfair competition with respect to scientific evidence regarding the existence, extent, or current or future impacts of anthropogenic induced climate change,” said the state Senate Rules Committee’s floor analysis of the bill.
If there is a “Hall of Infamy” for proposed laws, this bill should take pride-of-place in the science wing. A snippet reveals that the justification for this measure is based on the false “consensus” assertion and is also derived from the questionable science policies implemented by Obama’s Environmental Protection Agency:
(1) There is broad scientific consensus that anthropogenic global warming is occurring and changing the world’s climate patterns, and that the primary cause is the emission of greenhouse gases from the production and combustion of fossil fuels, such as coal, oil, and natural gas.
(2) The United States Environmental Protection Agency (USEPA) states that the buildup of atmospheric greenhouse gases results in impacts that include the following:
(A) Changing temperature and precipitation patterns.
(B) Increases in ocean temperatures, sea level, and acidity.
(C) Melting of glaciers and sea ice.
(D) Changes in the frequency, intensity, and duration of extreme weather events.
(E) Shifts in ecosystem characteristics, such as the length of the growing season, timing of flower blooms, and migration of birds.
(F) Increased threats to human health.
The measure seems to correspond with the attacks being made by the group spear-headed by former Vice President Al Gore, Attorneys General United for Clean Power. This group includes our state’s own Kamala Harris, and is focused on prosecuting Big Oil for alleged misuse of climate data it gathered.
“Combined with the plans laid by California Attorney General Kamala Harris — part of the alliance of AGs that has sought to investigate not only oil, gas, and coal companies, but private advocacy groups and university scientists who have played a role in what is characterized as ‘climate denial’— the bill would begin laying the legal groundwork for an astonishingly broad campaign of inquisition and, potentially, expropriation,” Mr. Olson said in a May 31 post.
I was curious as to which of our state senators thought suppressing my First Amendment rights was more important than addressing more pressing, and real, issues. I would like to introduce you to Senator Ben Allen of the 26th District representing a bastion of deep blue liberalism, Santa Monica.
Californians who would like to share their views with Allen can CLICK HERE.
I just sent Allen a note inquiring if his next legislative proposal was for re-instituting burning at the stake for heretics such as myself.
Personally, I would like to propose that the First Amendment be placed on the “Endangered Species” list…at least in this state.
Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.
I’m not sure the climate change deniers had anything to worry about, the folks caught cheating are all on the left. Maybe they considered that they may be creating a law that would be turned against them. Naaaa… they aren’t that smart!
Why would they worry about being prosecuted under this law? The only potential prosecutors are all liberal Dems who won’t prosecute even true serious criminal malfeasance. There is no chance there would be any prosecution of their fellow libs
If Kalifornia did pass such a law, and began prosecuting people under it, at what point does armed insurrection become a justifiable response?
Leftists are asking the same question. Why do you think leftists push to disarm the citizens?
Every totalitarian knew that an unarmed population was a necessary condition for control. Disarming the colonists was the British purpose behind Lexington and Concord and the results confirmed their thinking.
My older brother is a retired glaciologist from the U of Maine. For a number of years through him I became involved in he & his colleagues in the field ongoing debate re global warming. They ceased the debate several years ago. They couldn’t successfully address or counter questions or points I’d keep raising. So they did what all good statists ultimately do, they backed out declaring me an idiot.
I have to say I was surprised at the shallowness of their thinking. Their inability to deal with thinking outside their box of similar thought.
California is the epicenter of such impulses. After all, they’re led by a creature built on moonbeams.
Leftists as a herd deal with opposition as California tried to do with this legislation.
At least there was a period of prolonged debate between you. In the “scientific community” at large the shift into the political realm happened a decade or more. No public debate allowed. Skepticism no longer a fundamental tenet.
Our crappy legislators are also busy attempting to make it illegal to own a gun by reintroducing 4 bills, some of which Gov Brown (!) vetoed in the past.
This AGW bill will be back.
This is in the pipeline too.
I am very much afraid that when we ceded the Academy (from universities down to kindergarten) to the leftists, we ensured our loss in this war. Demography is destiny, they say, and we are seriously outnumbered.
People who propose such legislation and actions must be true believers. Only true believers would think that they could win a contest in which their opposition actually gets heard, and can enter evidence and facts into the record that the believers either don’t know exists or prefer to ignore. True believers are operating in an echo chamber that leads them to presume that their position is unassailable, when, in fact, it’s the weaker of the two. The best they could hope for in court is a draw that shows the science is not “settled” and there is no “consensus”, i.e. a legal loss.
Could the polar bear be sued for showing his disapproval with the legislative process?
I’ve always wondered if the push for this was really just a spoiling attack – the climate alarmists know their “science” is unraveling, so they want to get the other side to agree *no one* will face legal action for being “wrong” on the science. Despite the fact that the alarmists have perpetrated fraud on many levels.
Would this bill have allow people to sue Al Gore and get their money back from that fraud of a documentary he made?
I would be very interested in seeing what stance the ACLU has taken on this law.
Oh, good. Let’s sue NASA. Their “climate change” models (Jim Hansen, I’m looking at you, from your “coming ice age” to your “anthropogenic global warming” models) are non-predictive.
The parallels between California and Orwell’s Oceania and between Senate Bill 1161 and Crimethink are stark. It is only a matter of time before the transmogrification will be complete.
Kali’s leftists owe an apology to the Catholic Church. They’re always criticizing the church for prosecuting and imprisoning Galileo. But the church were a bunch of slackers compared to the Kali government. Consider; only a tiny minority of Astronomers subscribed to Copernicus’ heliocentric system. The vast majority subscribed to the two extant geocentric systems; the Ptolemaic and the Tychonic. The Tychonic system, in which while the other planets revolved around the sun the stars, moon, and sun still revolved around the earth, appears to have been the more popular. It had none of the problems of the Ptolemaic system, requiring no eccentrics or epicycles to explain the observable movements of the planets, and was as mathematically sound as the Copernican.
It should be pointed out that the reason the astronomers, both clerics and laymen, stuck with the geocentric model had nothing to do with religion or superstition. It was simply that if the earth was moving there should be observable stellar parallax. Parallax is when the position of two distant objects appear to change relative to each other. For instance if you’re driving and going 30mph, the needle on an analog speedometer appears from the driver’s seat to line up with the number 30 on the gauge. But if you change position to the passenger seat when the driver hits 30mph it no longer looks to you as if the needle and the number on the gauge line up. And they were right, but no one including Galileo had any idea of the great distances involved and no one had the refined optics to observe the shift until the early 1800s.
Since Galileo couldn’t provide that evidence, which from the letters in the Vatican archives they would have accepted, Galileo insisted that the tides proved the earth was moving like how the water in the tank of a freshwater barge to Venice sloshes around as it moves.
This was of course nonsense. The church rightly rejected that so-called evidence. Einstein, in a forward to a 1952 English translation of Galileo’s Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, wrote that had Galileo not been so emotionally invested even he would not have accepted that as evidence. He was therefore condemned not only for heresy and errors in faith but also for asserting the Copernican theory was in fact true (the Catholic church had no problem with Copernicus prior to that since Copernicus never claimed his theory was a physical reality but discussed it only as a mathematical theory) which was “absurd and false philosophically.” At that time, of course, there was no sharp distinction between what we now know as science and philosophy, hence the use of the word.
So basically the Catholic Church convicted Galileo of going against the consensus and being an “astronomical science denier.” Although I sense a certain religious zealotry on the part of the Kali leftists that not even all the Catholic clerics involved in the Galileo affair could muster (three of the judges did not sign the sentence: Francesco Barberini, Caspar Borgia, and Laudivio Zacchia).
Then the church sentenced to house arrest in what was in fact a very luxurious villa with picturesque grounds outside Florence. The church didn’t even interfere as he continued his work and he could receive visitors. That was how he was able to smuggle out a book he had written. The inquisition had ruled nobody could publish any of his books including any future books but his manuscript was eventually smuggled to Holland where it was published. Even when Galileo’s Discourses and Mathematical Demonstrations Relating to Two New Sciences (essentially the birth of what we now know as material engineering and kinematics) was being sold in Rome the church didn’t do anything about it. Galileo didn’t even suffer any further repercussions for violating the terms of his sentence.
All in all, what the Kali legislature is planning on doing is far crueler and with less scientific basis than what the Catholic church did. When are they going to apologize for criticizing the church when they’re telling the world they’re planning on being even bigger assholes?
So I am a Ph.D. research chemist. The passage of this law puts me in a very difficult position should I end up living in that fantasy land called Kalifornia.
If I perform research on global warming and my results categorically deny the existence of anthropogenic global warming component to normal climate change, then what do I do?
If I publish my results, then I could go to jail under this law. (It makes me wonder if the journal, their editors, the university where my research was sanctioned, my granting agency, and others, would end up being implicated as if it was a conspiracy and required to share my guilt).
If I refuse to publish my results for fear of prosecution, then I violate my agreement with the granting agency and I lose my funding and likely my job since no funding typically means no job.
If I manipulate my research and any results from it to show the legally mandated Anthropogenic Global Warming, then I have committed the crime of falsifying my research which would get me fired and ineligible from receiving grants for at least 20 years which would be the end of my career.
Should this law ever pass, then any meaningful climate related research in Kalifornia could become illegal and much of all other climate research could be forced into being unethical.
I am not sure what you would call it – fascism, idiocracy, kleptocracy or what ever, but this country is falling further and further under an insanity. If this insanity continues much longer then we will likely face another civil war. As it stands, with peaceful Trump supporters being attacked in the streets devoid of police because those in power want these attacks to occur with the leaders of the Democrat party and local Democrat officials blaming Trump supporters for the violence, with Hilary supporters claiming that their support for Hillary should she be indicted, liberal support for turning college campuses into centers of liberal indoctrination, the demands that conservative speakers not be allowed to speak with violence and interruptions sanctioned by the hosting facility, and other acts, makes it all appear that this war has already started.
If it is this bad now, then this summer promises to be horrific. Should Trump be elected, then everything will likely become worse. It amazes me how the Democrat party has devolved from “the party of the people” (or so they claimed) to the party of autocratic governing where should you not support them, then everything from government agencies to meticulously organized spontaneous riots it thrown at you to force you to change your position. America of 50 years ago would never have stood for this behavior.
It’s not a law. It’s an inactive legislative proposal by a lunatic state senator from Santa Monica, an entrenched bastion of wealthy, brainwashed lefties and brainless burnouts from the 60s.
There is an ash heap in California of such proposals. This one is particularly insane and will thus probably be rebirthed after the feds have put their imprimatur on this concept at the DOJ level, which obastard is trying to do before he leaves office.
If Hillary is elected, she will use such proposals as shakedowns from big corporations. Business will then continue as usual but at a higher price that we, the consumer, will pay/reimburse.
Sane Californians are always welcome in Texas. Y’all may talk faster than we can listen, but it’ll work out eventually.
This is the kind of governance that drove me out of CA after living there 57 years, my entire life. My husband was never so glad to see anything than he was the “Welcome to California” road sign in our rear-view mirror the day we left.
That once glorious state is now run by lunatics and taken over by the trash of the world.
Do you believe in global warming? Yes, the earth has been warming since the last ice age. The first 12,000 years mankind had nothing to do with it. The last 23 years and 2 months….mankind is totally to blame. (Somehow, they don’t like that answer either)